Angle sensor complies with ASIL D

June 30, 2020 //By Christoph Hammerschmidt
Angle sensor complies with ASIL D
Component manufacturer TDK Corp. is expanding its digital TMR (tunnel magneto resistance) angle sensor portfolio with the new TAD4140 for demanding automotive and industrial applications. Compared to the existing TAD2141 angle sensor, the new product offers complete redundancy thanks to two integrated signal processor units and four (2x2) TMR bridges in a single TSSOP16 package.

Both sensors can detect angles up to 360 degrees without contact. The TAD4140 is suitable for motor control applications, such as commutation of brushless DC motors (BLDC) used, for example, in electromechanical power steering (EPS) in vehicles.

With the internal diagnostic functions of TDK's digital angle sensor portfolio, both the TAD2141 and TAD4140 meet the requirements of automotive applications where functional safety is required. The TAD4140 achieves Automotive Safety Integrity Level D (ASIL D) in vehicle safety. Thanks to its separate signal routing, high signal availability and diagnostic coverage, it is able to detect a system failure and thus trigger the fail-operation mode.

The digital outputs support functionalities such as Hall emulation (UVW), encoders with up to 12 bits (ENC), incremental encoders (ABZ), pulse width modulation (PWM) and serial peripheral interface (SPI). Due to its redundancy capability, the TAD4140 can simultaneously provide two different signals, such as ABZ and ENC, to calculate speed, direction and rotor position. This means that the sensor can be used in applications with two electronic control units (ECUs) operating in a master/slave configuration - for example, for angle measurement in EPS applications.

TDK's TMR technology is combined with an application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) that also contains an embedded digital signal processor (DSP). Thanks to integrated static and dynamic calibration functions, both the TAD2141 and TAD4140 can compensate for drifts in gain, offset or orthogonality. The sensors guarantee an angular accuracy of ±0.35 degrees, achieving the industry's highest accuracy with an angular error of only ±0.05 degrees at room temperature.

The pin assignment of the TSSOP16 package is identical for both versions. This gives customers more design flexibility by allowing them to easily switch to the redundant version (TAD4140) if necessary.

Samples of the TAD4140 are available immediately. Production start is planned for the fourth quarter of 2020.

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